Many human rights organizations across the world, as well as the NCRI, are calling on the Iranian regime to abolish the death penalty. Execution is used arbitrarily by the Iranian regime. Fair trials are not granted beforehand and certain elements such as the self-defense argument are not taken into account.

Maliheh Haji Hassani, 29, was executed in Adelabad Prison in Shiraz, the capital of Fars Province, on January 14. Although, her execution was not announced by any state-run media outlets in Iran. She has spent three years on death row on the charge of murdering her fiancée.

Also, a woman identified only as Sara M was executed in Mashhad Prison, according to the state-run Rokna news agency. The 35-year-old had also spent three years on death row. It is not known the exact date that she was executed on.

The Iranian regime hanged 16 women in 2019, six during the first three weeks of December alone, which is not surprising given the increasing suppression following the November uprising.

Of course, given the Iranian regime’s secrecy surrounding things that make them look bad, most executions are carried out in secret, so we may not ever really know the true number of executions.

What we do know is that there are dozens of women on death row in Iran, because Iran is the world leader in executions of women. Many women are being held in Qarchak Prison and most are mothers.

One of the biggest problems is that the regime doesn’t categorize deliberate murders by degree, which means that anyone who kills someone is sentenced to death, regardless of their motivation. As many of the women convicted of murder in Iran are victims of violence who committed murder in self-defense or defense of their children, their trials and sentences are grossly unfair.

This is a direct result of the regime’s anti-woman policies that allow violence against women, including sexual violence, to be excused away or blamed on the woman. This allows men to beat their wives, partners, and children without fear of repercussions.

If women had a legal recourse, for instance reporting that man to the police and getting him to put in prison, then they would not resort to murder. This would be a better system, one of believing women. But it will never happen with the mullahs in charge. After all, the mullahs have always allowed female prisoners to be victims of violence, including sexual violence, at the hands of prison authorities.